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Papillion La Vista South photo creates social distancing concerns

Posted at 4:48 PM, Aug 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-15 00:54:12-04

PAPILLION, Neb. (KMTV) — School leaders have been promising students, staff and parents that social distancing will be enforced when school doors open.

But a recent picture from a Papillion La Vista South High School student shows has some people raising a red flag.

A picture of a jammed packed hallway at Papillion La Vista South High School is making its rounds on the internet.

"When I saw the picture, my immediate thought was we need to fix this," said Principal Jeff Spilker.

Spilker says the picture was taken on the very first day of school, before staff had a chance to enforce COVID-19 safety measures.

“Social distancing is a challenge with a school of 1,800. But that is why we are so, so, so stressing to these students that we have to have these masks on at all times," he said.

Spilker says since the picture was taken they have been able to implement the 3 W's. Wear your mask, wash your hands, and watch your distance.

“We know we still have a little bit of work to do in the before school time, after school time, and lunch," Spilker said.

According to Dr. Mark Rupp of Nebraska Medicine, there is another safety standard schools can apply as well.

“As much as possible you want to increase your ventilation capacity within a classroom, so trying to work on your H-VAC system and trying to bring as much outdoor air indoors," he said.

Papillion La Vista South High School opened their doors at about 80 percent of the students doing in person learning and 20 percent online.

Spilker says that the students are responding well to being back, adding it’s a learning process for everyone.

“I think all of us are naturally social people and we want to be social and we want to have that physical closeness to each other but at this time it’s just not appropriate," Spilker said.

Papillion La Vista South High School has not reported any positive COVID-19 cases in their first week back.